I'm tempted to pick this apart, because I ain't got a clue half of what you said.
I see people give these strange, senseless, gibberish bits of advice to others all the time, and usually it's one line here, one phrase there, and I never bother to ask, because in most cases, they clearly have no clue what they are doing or saying and so I know I'm not going to get an answer from someone who actually knows anything.
Half the answers on this forum are written by people who have yet to make a penny online and are simply parroting back advice they heard others say to them, which they themselves have never tested or used.
There used to be one guy one here, used to post daily, but haven't seen him in a few months, not sure what happened to him... but he used to post advice of writing, editing, and self-publishing, talked a lot about content writing for niches.... I assumed he knew what he was talking about... he had several "reports" for sale here on Warrior's Forum, with titles like "Make millions with Kindle"....
One day a woman showed up here, asking how to make money on Kindle, writing Erotica...
I make money on Kindle writing Erotica. I knew exactly the thing she needed to know... but in reading the tread, I saw something really odd... this guy, he answered her, with a a POPULAR URBAN MYTH... one I had run into in the past and knew to be 100% false.
He started telling her, step by step... do this, do that, blah, blah, blah...
And instead of responding to her, I responded to him, to ask him point blank:
WHEN have YOU ever done THIS and made it work?
Do you know what he said?
"I haven'y ever done, it but I know it works because ____ told me."
Well, ___, him I knew. A popular scam artist.
Curious, I asked him for more details.... "If you never tried it, why are you telling her to do it?"
He said: "Because it works, ___ said so."
I said: "I have 170+ books for sale on Amazon. I can prove this technique not only false, but I can publish a book rite now using this method and track it right here on WF, full transparency, let's see how fast Amazon bans the book. You can't do the method you are telling her, it's against Amazon's ToS. She'll lose her account if she takes your advice."
After a bit more conversation with him, I finally learned: He had NEVER published a book on Amazon. Never written a book in his life. Never even wrote his so-called reports. Turns out, he bought PLR Private Label Rights to some shady book on how to make money on Kindle and was just rehashing what it told him to say. He never once tried any of the advice he gave to people around here. Had people thinking he was a "Self made Kindle Millionaire" (what he called himself) and he didn't even have one book on Kindle.
Do you know what tipped me off he was lying?
Calling himself a Self-Made Kindle Millionaire.
Did you know there are exactly 3 (THREE) self made Kindle Millionaires. Yep. Only 3. And you know what else? I'm personal friends with all three of them.
And guess what: Amazon's IRS records are public record. And in them, there is a list, divided into categories...by how many Kindle authors there are in each income bracket. There are only 3 Kindle authors who have made a million in a single year on Kindle. Not one of them writes Erotica. One write vampire romance for teens, one write murder mysteries, and one is Hugh Howey himself who writes science fiction. There are fewer then 1,000 Kindle authors making 300,000 a year. Fewer then 10,0000 making 100,000 a year, and nearly 8 million who are making less then $5,000 a year. Welcome to the REALITY of Kindle's so called "Erotica millionaires"
And, yes I know you were talking about something else, but my point is... this guy, was at the time, considered to be the "GURU" of "becoming a Kindle millionaire" and he supposedly had "made millions" writing Erotica. A genre, that will have you struggling to make ends meet unless you put out a new 10,000 word story EVERY SINGLE WEEK.
There are no, "Erotica millionaires" on Kindle.
I'm personal friends with the woman who has the top selling Erotica books in nearly every category and she struggles to make $40k a year, and SHE'S the one Amazon lists as their HIGHEST PAID Erotica author in the public release of their tax records.
My point being the man was a fraud. Running around selling reports here on WF, telling people he had made millions selling Erotica on Kindle, when in fact he'd not even written the report he was selling and had never once written ANY book for Kindle.
Now here I am reading your post and what are you talking about? Following "GURUs" who are telling you this, that and the other thing, and my question to you, is, can any of them PROVE that they are doing the thinks they are telling you that you have to do?
You want a REAL Guru to follow, someone who CAN prove he's taking his own advice? Follow Tim Ferris.
Because he is up front and transparent with what he does. If he tells you "Get a website and do this with it"... he then SHOWS you his website, so you can actually see how his did it and just exactly what he did. 90% of the time, you ask an internet marketing "Guru" to show you their person site that they tested their advice out on and they give you some line about "Oh, I can't show you that, it's private"... well, if it's so private, how do they make money with it, eh? It ain't "private", it simply doesn't exist. They have no website to show you. They are just rehashing what they heard someone else say, telling you what SOUNDS GOOD and SEEMS like it SHOULD work, but they never tested it out for themselves, so they really don't know.
Yes, there are real Gurus out there, but most of them are not trying to sell you something, most of them are too busy making money to have time to focus on selling reports to teach you how to make money.
When you look to internet marketing guru's for advice, ask yourself one thing: if they are making so much money with their method, then WHY are they so VERY DESPERATE to get you to buy their reports? The answer: they are not making money from the methods they are pushing, they are making money off selling the reports. If you don't buy their reports, they can't make enough money to feed their families.
And that's something to think about.
Before you buy into a guru - ask yourself, what is their primary income - the method in the report, or the report itself, because that makes all the difference in the world, in wither or not the advice in that report is actually going to help you succeed or not.
Top question I get about my mega long forum posts - people always want to know - why don't I put it in a report and sell the info, why post on forums for free? Because I don't need the money from selling reports. Selling reports is not my income. I have nothing to sell you (unless you want to buy Erotica novels about Elves having sex with Unicorns, because that's what I sell on Kindle).
Think about it - I have nothing to sell you, so I have nothing to hide. No reason to say: "I'll help you for a mentoring fee" because that's not my job. I don't say: "I'll help you, but you gotta buy my report", because that's not my job.
My point is, it sounds to me like you have spent the last 7 years buying money making reports written by gurus who's full time income is selling money making reports...
You are spending money to make money online, but the only ones making money are the scam artists that are telling you spending money to make money online is the way to.
Do you stop to notice how THEY are making money online? By stringing you alone, getting you to dish out all your money to them, even though all they've done is give you 7 years of false hope and false promises. They've spent the last 7 years making money online, off YOU, and while they are $30k richer, you are $30k poorer.
Are they making money by building niche websites? NO! They are making money be telling you INCORRECT information of how to make niche websites!
They scammed you!
Open your eyes and look at what they are doing!
after 7 years of buying money making reports on how to make money, written by people who make money by selling reports, and are not making money doing the things they are telling you to do...
you are now starting to ask "How do I make money doing this?"
well, you start out by asking people who are DOING the exact same thing you want to do, not by asking people who make money selling reports.
That would be step #1.
Let's pick apart your post...
There's some things in it I want to... *cough* ... address
Namely, the fact that, I make money online, it's my full time career, and half the stuff you've been told you MUST do, is a complete waste of your time and money and any one who was REALLY making money online, would not have recommended these things to you... which is...
oh, how do I say this?
... you've been buying advice from people who make money off selling advice that they have never themselves tested and can not prove if it works or not....
and so you are spending way more money then necessary to get started.
Me, while today, I have equipment that cost $10,000+ including a $5k computer, a server, and very expensive web hosting... when I started, I started out with a free hosted web site, a free hosted blog, free video hosting, and free PayPal buttons provided by paypal. It did not cost me one single penny to get started.
You can start for free, stay free for several years, and once you have enough traffic and customers to warrant doing so, then you can start upgrading to paid hosting, paid blogs, etc.
But in the beginning, you CAN start without spending a penny.
I did and when you start asking around, you'll find a lot of folks around here did.
Yes, it's true that it takes money to make money, and buying services is going to have better results long term, but when you are just getting started, you have no customers yet, no audience yet, and there is really no reason for you to go into paid services until you have 1,000 dedicated customers.
The time and work it takes to gain 1,000 dedicated customers organically without buying lists or traffic (usually 3 years) is going to teach you a lot of basics, you would not have learned otherwise, and is going to tell you if you really do have what it takes (mentally/emotionally) to keep this business going beyond the 3 year breaking point.
I would never recommended paying for webhoting for any business that is less then 3 years old, because 3 years is the "newlywed" point. After 3 years, most business owners get bored and move on to something else. If in 3 years you are still a driving force behind your business, then is the time to switch to paid services. Not before.
Okay... making money online takes a minimum 3 years before you are going to see a break even point, usually for most people 5 years can be expected before making a part-time income. Takes longer to get a full time income.
Yeah, once in a while someone will make lots of money fast, usually the scam artists selling reports, like the ones who scammed you.
If you need money fast, WalMart and McDonald's are your answer. Not online money.
Never heard of any of them.
I recomend Tim Ferris (an internet marketer, who is fully transparent with his sites and how he runs them and teachers you EXACTLY how to do EXACTLY what he is doing with no hype, and again, no reports [url=http://fourhourworkweek.com/]Tim Ferriss and The 4-Hour Workweek[/url] )
and Cameron Johnson ([url=http://www.cameronjohnson.com/]Cameron Johnson[/url] millionaire by the time he was 23 years old, started his first online business at age 9, now there's an internet marketer who REALLY knows what he's doing and isn't hiding behind money making reports!....
and before he was president, I used to recommend Trump, [url]https://www.donaldjtrump.com/[/url] I have all his books, read them all back when I was first getting started in making money online... I figured, why look to the gurus who I can not see have made any money, when there's Trump over there with his towers... but... uhm... I don't anymore. I sometimes think he's lost his mind these days. But, if you ever have a goal to start your own business and work your way up to president of a company and then president of America, he's the one to look to, because he actually did it, you can give him that much at least. He ain't hiding behind selling phony reports, he's too busy charging forth in his self-made man charge to, who knows what. I bet if he declared he was going to be king of the planet, he could probably do it, he certainly has determination to do anything he puts his mind to on his side.
What did the 3 men I listed do? Niches. What were their niches:
Tim Ferris: protein powder, that he created and sold on infomercials; started out a sports player, but he was allergic to all the protein powder drinks on the market, created the first one that was glutton free - found a need and filled it
Cameron Johnson: Beany Babies - he bought 12,000 of them from the company, then sold them for 5x retail on eBay, used the money to buy equipment to design video games, went on to be one of Sega's top game developers - at age 12
Donald Trump: hotels, buys them, flips, buys more, kept going from there, now he's President of America
Yes. You need a niche.
What is your niche?
Do you have one?
Did you have one BEFORE you started thinking about making money online?
If you started LOOKING for a niche as way to make money online, know that you are highly likely to fail. You can succeed, yes, but, the fact remains, MOST people who succeed, because they took the niche that defines them, the niche they live for, the niche they obsess over, the niche they are an active participant of, the niche they have done for years... and thought to themselves: "Boy is this great, I'll bet there's a way to make money doing this!"
They succeeded because they already had a thing they do, and they looked for a way to make money doing it.
The ones who fail, nearly always fail because they did the process in reverse and went: "I nee some money, I wonder what I can do to make money, hey that guy over there is making money with that; I've never done that before, but he's making money at it, how hard cane it be?"
My niche is Erotica, as already stated. Specifically Yaoi, in the sub genre Unicorn Porn. My niche is sex with fictional horses. Yes it's a thing. Yes it does make money. No, It will not make you a millionaire, but you can live off it. My goal is not becoming rich or wealthy, my goal is, living my life without having to leave home to go to work at a "job". Having an income doing something I enjoy doing, and doing it at home. My niche is not going to send me to millionaire mansions, but it will provide for my family. For me it works.
I am a success in what I do, because I'm reaching my goals. But, there are people who would say, I'm not successful, because I've not reached a certain "income level" or haven't got loads of big houses and fancy cars. I tell them, I don't need or want those things. Those things are not my goals. Never have been. So I'm not striving for them. Yes, my goals are significantly lower then those of most people looking to do online money incomes.
Which brings up an important issue...
Not just have a niche, but have clearly defined goals.
Are you looking to make a minimum wage income online? That's VERY doable. Are you looking to be a millionaire in 5 weeks? That's not so easy. You're probably somewhere in the middle of those goals. Know what you end goal is.
You mentioned providing for a family.
You may not like what I have to say next, but you really need to hear it:
Making money online is not FAST, not QUICK, and not EASY. You have a baby on the way and house payments due? Get a job at WalMart. No shame in that. I worked at WalMart stocking shelves while I worked on building my online income. A lot of people do. It pays the bills and provides for your family until you have your business stabilized and running.
Or MacDonald's. I know flipping burgers is a joke, but my brother makes $11 an hour 40 hours a week, flipping burgers at McDonald's while he's working on his online business on the weekends.
I see time and again people here on Warrior's Forum, complain that they don't want to work at Walmart or McDonald's, but heck, they are both good paying jobs, that'll keep you afloat while you work to get your online business started, and there no shame in working to provide for your family.
Know this up front: MOST online business are not going to break even before 3 years after starting the business and in most cases, the failure is caused by putting MAKING MONEY first instead of putting LOVE OF NICHE first.
I was an Avon Sales Rep for 16 years. Do you know what Avon's #1 product is? A face cream called Anew. It renews your skin, gets rid of wrinkles, blah, blah, blah... they sent me a test jar to try it, so I could glorify it's wonders to my customers. I tried it. I hated it. It smelled horrific. It made my eyes puffy, it cased a rash. I was allergic to it. I could use it. I couldn't touch it. And I certainly couldn't put it on my customers' faces without breaking into a rash. And yet, Avon wanted me to sell it.
Ads were on tv for it. Ads were online for it. Customers would ask me: "Have you tried it? Is it any good?" I'm the local sales rep, I'm supposed to be selling this thing, and I told customers EXACTLY what I thought of it. That it was a crappy, $75 jar of shit. Don't waste you money. Avon had other face creams, cheaper ones, that I wasn't allergic to. Bigger jar for $10 and it worked better. People asked about the $75 jar of Anew, and that's a 30% commission every time I sell one, but I hated the stuff so I continued promoting the cheaper product and stearing my customers as far from Anew as possible.
Why? Because any salesmen worth his salt, can sell any product to anyone, BUT a GOOD salesman knows not to sell a product he can not stand behind to his loyal customers if he wants his customers to trust him and come back for more.
While I could drive traffic to some of Avon's products, I just could not in good consiuosonce, drive traffic to something that had caused the horrific side effects I had gotten from Anew. It nearly sent me to the hospital, the allergic reaction was so bad. I had a seriously anaphalaxtic reaction to this stuff, I just could not promote a product that I felt was truly dangerous to my health.
Why do I tell you this?
Because, I see it here, time and again, I saw it one another thread just this morning, people find a product or affiliate program that they think will bring in money, so they start promoting it, without ever having used the product. They have not tested it and do not know the results or side effects and yet they sell it anyways. Then they come here to WF and ask why they are not getting sales. I go look at their website to see if I can figure out the problem, and one look at the site, tells me immediately, they have no clue what they are selling. They speak in ad hype, but with no actual testimony. They don't tell how it worked for them, because they don't know if the product works or not. So how then, can they expect to drive traffic to it?
The reason good salesmen can hype up a product, is because they try the product, test it out, and then when customers ask, they can tell you the product inside out, and give examples of the actual results they got when they tried it. That's how the world's best salesmen drive traffic to their products - with first hand experience and knowledge.
Okay, so back to you. You want to drive traffic. How are you going to do that? And to what end? What product are you driving traffic to?
Me, I drive traffic to my novels. Novels I wrote, about characters I love. I write a lot of articles about the books, about the characters, I get readers hyped up for the novels, so they rush to buy said novels. I couldn't do that with novels I had never read though. I know my product. Because I know my product, I can drive traffic to it.
Do you know your product? In spite of what all the money making gurus tell you about "lists" and "buying traffic" the #1 thing that is going to truly drive traffic and keep it coming back for more, is your knowledge of your product and your ability to share you experiences with actually using that product.
Do you know your product well enough to glorify it so much that you drive traffic to it?
I've never understood this one.
I see it every day, Warriors shouting it from the rooftops from side of the forum to the other, but I've yet to see the point or reason for doing it.
I don't have a list. Heck, i don't even use email. I have an email address for 1 reason: so i can have a way to log into accounts. I never use it to send or receive mail. If someone REALLY wants to write to me, I've got a mailbox at the end of my drive way. If you're too lazy to write an actual letter on actual paper with an actual pen, and mail it to my actual mailbox, then, heck I ain't got any reason to listen to anything you have to say. Sorry. If it was REALLY important, you'd have sent it to me in the mail. You know - with a stamp, so my mailman could deliver it to my driveway, where letters belong.
So, yeah... amassing a list of emails, I've never done that. Largely because I don't use email.
On that same note, similar to a "list" is networking. Networking I understand. And... I'll talk about it when I answer the next section... oh I'll talk about it. Networking is good. Know your people. Know your people well. Do you have people? (Customers? Do you know, who they are and WHAT, very, very specifically, exactly WHAT they truly ACTUALLY want?
I know what my people want: unicorns, doubled dicked unicorns, and transvestite elves in bed with said unicorns. See? I know EXACTLY what my customers want...I know what my customers want so well, that I can tell you if they prefer their men cut ot uncut. Uncut is the answer in case you wondered, the reason being it makes chastity cages more... useful. Yeah, we'll say useful. Painful perhaps? I write CBT. Not for the squeamish.
This is why the gurus ars making money. They are selling people like you reports on how to make money, stringing them along for decades.
It's why they are making money and you are not.
You are too busy buying their product to spend any time creating your own product.
To make money, one MUST have something to sell.
What is your product? My product is Kindle books. Novels where I toss Elves in bed with Unicorns. I have a clearly defined product and a clearly defined audience. A small audience, but I can tell you exactly who they are... about 7,000 of them, mostly female, obsessed with twinkie ukes, many of them I've meet in person, A few years ago, a whole group of them flew all the way from Japan here to Maine to meet me. One drove all the way from Alaska to meet me. Most of them I know on a first name basis via FaceBook and Twitter, where they follow me waiting for updates on my next novel, and unlike most authors, I actually talk to them on FaceBook and Twitter and Tumblr and YouTube.
I know who my audience is. I know what they want. I know where they hang out. So I know exactly where to find them when a new product is available for them.
It didn't happen over night. Most of them I found from a forum known as fanfiction.net, where I regularly posted Yaoi short stories to be read for free. They found my paid products through my free products.
I know my niche and it's industry.
I knew my niche BEFORE I set out to make money with it.
I was an active participant of my niche, as a consumer, for many years BEFORE I switched to being a seller in it.
People always get hung up on niches and spend years trying to determine their niche.
I knew right from the get go what my niche was, you know why? I'll tell you why. I'll tell you how I found my niche and I won't charge you one penny for it...
Once upon a time I was a 5 year old little girl in the 1970s and I was at a department store with my grammy and I saw the prettiest thing I'd ever seen: a little fat, chubby, purple horse, with a white mane. I wanted that little pony, but grammy couldn't afford it. Come Christmas, about 6 months later, I had that little pony. She went back and bought it. 40 years later I still have, what I know know is the very first "My Little Pony" horse every released. I have about 100 more of them as well, as Grammy Eva started buying them for me for every holiday - Easter, birthday, whatever. Over the years I amassed a huge collection of first edition My Little Pony horses.
As a teenager, I started writing fanfiction. Yep. About My Little Ponies.
Then in 1997 I discovered the dark side of the internet... monster porn, Yaoi, Hentai... and fanfiction.net, where existed... My Little Pony Unicorn Porn... a whole genre built around, sex with unicorns.
I started writing it, and never looked back. Now I'm a crazy old lady who's built her entire career around writing stories about sex with My Little Pony unicorns.
Nope. There was never a point when I stopped an said: "I wonder what niche I should try to make money with online?"
With me it was the other way around: "I can't stop writing about sex with unicorns, I wonder if there's a way I can make money with this?"
And that's the difference between having a niche that succeeds and having one that fails.
If you have to look for your niche, the chances are high that you will fail.
If you have a niche you love and you look for ways to make money at it,, chances are high you will succeed.
And THAT is what people mean when they say you have to first have a niche. They are NOT telling you to go out and LOOK for a niche, they are telling you to take WHATEVER niche you already are doing every day and use it to make money.
My niche is sex with unicorns, a strange niche, yes, I know, but it's a niche I know inside out, a niche I've been a part of since the 1970s, before I started looking to make money online with it in the 1990s.
I know my niche, I know it's consumers, because before I was a seller in it, I was a buyer of it.
I was active in it's forums YEARS before I started selling it. I know it's consumers on a first name basis, because they are people I talked to online for years before I started selling to them.
Do you know how I knew I hit a goldmine with my niche? When one day, I was talking online to my friends on fanfic.net and made a comment saying:
ME: "I wish there was more Unicorn Porn; it seems like I've read all that is out there."
Friend: "Me too. It's so hard to find. No one writes it any more."
Another friend: "Yeah, most of these stories were written in the 80s. Hard to find new stuff."
Friend #3: "Yeah, every one says unicorns are soooo 1970s, no one wants to write it any more."
The conversation on that forum went on for a few hundred posts of a few dozen girls, me being one of those gorls, talking back and forth about how few titles had ever been published in this genre that we loved reading. The conversation went on to have us all talking about the lack of unicorn porn, being the very thing that had driven every one of us to fanfiction.net. A hundred or so posts later the conversation changed to: "You know, EK, you write more of it than the rest of us, you should start writing novels and putting them up on Kindle. I know I'd buy them." followed by several more girls going "Yeah, me too. I'd by Unicorn Porn off Kindle if there was any up there."....
and so began history...
as I moved off of Fanfiction.net and on to Amazon Kindle, with one of the freakiest, most outlandish, small niche genres out there. A genre that has very few fans, but what fans it does have are obsessively devoted to it; and because I'm friends with all of them (about 7,000 girls total) I'm able to ask one on one, what exactly they want to see more of, less of...
In other words....
I found a need that needed filling and I not only knew how to fill it, but had the ability, drive, resources, and inside knowledge needed to grab that need and turn it into a money making career for me, that gave fans what they wanted.
I have a friend who's full time income is from Amazon affiliate marketing. He sells exactly 2 things off his website:
Toilet cleaners for RVS and rubber roof coating also for RVS.
That's it. He cornered the market of plumbing snakes for motorhomes. It's a strange niche. It's a super tiny niche. But when his toilet in his RV plugged up and he went to the internet looking for answers, do you know what he found? NOTHING. Not one single solitary website that told him how to solve his problem. He asked around at the RV park he was in. Found it was a pretty common problem. Found a need that needed to be filled. Bought himself a website, started writing how-to articles on how to fix toilet issues in RVs, linked to plumbing snakes on Amazon. Now it's it's his full time income. He's the go-to guy for how to unclog toilets in motorhomes. He succeeded in turning it into a full time income, because NO ONE else was focusing on that niche.
Whenever people look to make money online, they immediately jump into diet, health, beauty, weight lose, making money with surveys, SEO advice, etc. Niches that are a dime a dozen, Niches that are over saturated and so easy to talk about that literally EVERYONE can write articles about them. And then those same people complain and moan that they are not making money.
Well, why in heck WOULD they EXPECT to make money, when they are competing against millions of others?
Have you ever looked at the people who succeed? Do they talk about popular dime a dozen niches? No. Look at me - how many websites are out there devoted to th topic of Unicorn Porn. You know I have the ONLY one, right? I literary have ZERO competition. Look at the RV toilet guy. He's easy to find. You know why? Because he has the ONLY website out there that is devoted to unclogging RV toilets. Me and him and hundreds of others like us, succeed, because we found a need, that we knew how to fill, and we cornered the market on it, because every one else was too busy pushing diet pills and SEO blogs to notice the people who actually had needs, that needed filling.
If you want to succeed in niche marketing, you need to have a niche that fills a need. Answer a desire that people have, that is not being met. People have needs You need to have a product, that consumers of the niche WANT, one they can not find ANYWHERE else.
Somewhere out there is a guy who is the king of unclogging RV toilets. It's his niche. There are people who desperately need to unclog toilets. He tells them how. He fills a need.
There are women out there obsessively driven to read about sex with unicorns and almost no one writing stories for them to read. Here I was already writing those stories on fanfiction.net. It was a simple thing for me to change platform and start publishing my novels for the market that wanted them. Unicorn Porn is my niche.
Yes. You would think so.
Uhm... there's nothing about business licenses with your state, nothing about business permits with your town, nothing about getting an EIN from the IRS listed on your list.
Did your "gurus" forget to tell you the first step to starting a business is to contact the IRS and get permission to do so? You do know you are REQUIRED by federal law to have an EIN before you set up your website, right? That you have to file paperwork with the IRS and with States officials about collecting Sales Taxes, and you have to have permits from your town hall to run a business out of your house.
You didn't list those things, which is one of the first things I noticed, that made me have that little rant back there about people selling reports on how to make money, when they obviously do not know how to even start a business.
First step to starting an online business, is contacting the IRS and letting then know you are doing so, so they can assign you an EIN which you will need come April every year when you file your BUSINESS taxes, in addition to your regular personal taxes.
If anyone sells you a report on how to start a business and they neglect to tell you the ACTUAL legal stuff you need to do first, you might want to not take any of their advice at all, because it's unlikely they every started a business in the first place, seeing how they forgot to tell you that very important bit of information that has to be done BEFORE you buy web hosting, create lists, or ...
start selling things ILLEGALLY without a licences or sales tax number (the EIN)
You do know if you sell anything online BEFORE the IRS assigns you a sales tax number you could end up with lots of fines and possible prison time for tax evasion, right? Your gurus did tell you that, right? I mean, obviously they sold you those reports LEGALLY and collected sales tax and reported to the IRS all the money they made from selling those reports ... right?
Think about it.
Think long and hard about it.
Next time you consider buying a report on how to make money online, ask the seller to send you a scanned photo of their sales tax certificate from the IRS. Everyone selling reports LEGALLY will have one and as started in the IRS guidelines is REQUIRED to show it to any buyer who asks to see it, to prove they are a real business, that it really is registered with the IRS and is authorized to sell you their products, LEGALLY in the US.
Very few people who buy money making reports, even know about this... ALWAYS ask to see their EIN certificate and business licences. They are required to provide them for you to look at, if you ask for them, and if they refuse to show them to you, they likely don't have them, and you next thing to do would be to fill our a Better Business Bureau report to report them for selling goods without a license so that the IRS can go knock on their door and collect all the taxes they have not files for all those reports they sold illegally.
If you want to start a business, even an online one, you have to do it legally. If you don't do it legally you are only asking for heeps of trouble when the IRS catches you, and they will.
And it doesn't take buying a report to learn this stuff, the government has an entire website devoted to teaching people how to start their own business, with all the information available 100% free. Here, I'll give you the link and I won't charge you a penny for it:
^^^^THAT^^^^ should be the FIRST place you go to find advice on how to start a business. Ignore the "gurus" go straight to the people who make the rules that govern running a business.
Okay... see, now this is the part that bothers me.
Why did you have to actively go out and LOOK for a niche? Do you not have any hobbies? Gardening? Car repair? Photography? Model planes? Chess? Checkers? Sudako? Cooking? Fly Fishing? Frisbie? Quilting? Dungeons & Dragons? Star wars? Spiderman? Comic books? CosPlay? Camping? Hiking? Dog breeding? Do you really not have a niche? Do you really do nothing in you spare time?
Not trying to sound harsh here, but... how do you not know what your niche is?
I mean, just search the word "niche" in this forum and you'll find THOUSANDS of people asking the same question: "How do I find a niche?" And all I can do every time I see that is say: How do you not know what the word niche means? Do not have access to a dictionary?
YOUR niche, is the ONE THING you do with your life that defines you and WHO YOU ARE.
Gamers are defined by the video game niche and their love of playing video games.
Whovians are defined by their niche and their love of Dr. Who.
Trekkies live for the Star Trek niche.
It is NOT possible to be a living breathing human and not have a niche that defines you as a person and set you apart and different from others and groups you into a "community" of others.
I blame internet marketing scam artists masquerading as "gurus" for confusing people to the point that no one knows what a niche is any more. They fill people with hype over niche-this and niche-that, and try to make a niche out to be some ivory tower no one has access to.
A niche is a small group of things groups together by a common theme. Collecting Disney Comic Books is a niche. It's a totally different niche from collecting BatMan comic Books, though both are sub-niches within the niche of comic book collecting.
In terms of online business, the word niche is very simple another word for hobby.
Next time you read a niche marketing guru, every time he says the word "niche" replace it with the word "hobby" and see if, finding your niche suddenly become easier and makes more sence to you.
rewrite it as:
[b]I spent a lonnnng time trying to find his hobby. [/b]
Can you see NOW, why I say I can never understand why people find it so hard to find their niche? How hard can it be to look for a hobby you do in your spare time?
When a money making guru says to you:
[b]Find a niche and make money with it.[/b]
What he really means is:
[b]Find a hobby you like doing and are doing already and make money with it.[/b]
That's all a niche is. A hobby. A thing you are ALREADY DOING in your spare time.
When you have no clear vision, no self defining niche, no product you can glorify from the rooftops... you don't need to pay for hosting. A free wix, webs, blogger, or wordpress.com site will work fine. Like I said before. Until you've had your permits and licenses for at least 3 years and have attracted 1,000 customers via a free site, there's no reason to start paying for hosting this early in.
Standard legal stuff. Believe me, when the sheriff knows on your door with court papers, you'll be glad you have them (a guy tried to sue me in 2015... luckily there were disclaimers and shit on my site, there in my footer, links to each of their own pages. Believe me, once you start making money online, scam artists are going to come crawling out of every corner... Did you know, there is actually a big business in stealing web businesses? I didn't then, but I do now, and it was lucky me, I had all that bat crazy legal shit on my site once it came time to head to court. Disclaimers really will save your ass. Get them on your site before anything else goes up.
Live and learn. Once you got money, every one and his cousin is going to want it and a lot of them are going to try to use your website against you... if you ain't got those disclaimers (proper ones written by lawyers) you could lose your business and have to start all over again.
Okay... I've seen Stripe mentioned a few times around on this forum, and I have to ask: What the hell is Stripe and why does everyone keep telling everyone else they need it?
Off to ask Google what Stripe it...
Okay. I found a website called Stripe. It's not #1 or page 1 of Google, you know, the way PayPal is when you search for them. I assume it's an alternative to PayPal or something, right? You know PayPal is free, right? They give you buttons to put on your site. And it's free. You know, no money up front, no hidden fees. Free. I see Stripe says, no payment up front, no hidden fees, just 29% pay as you go. 29%? That's quite a lot. Especially when PayPal is, you know...free.
Uhm... why? You do know it's not needed right? I've run 200+ websites since 1997 and have never had it yet.
Yes, I've seen Google's scare mongering to try to get people to switch. I've also been following the studies. Real studies, not theories by gurus, but actual real studies that are being done. And Sites with SSL certification, have a hard time ranking on page 3 of Google let alone page 1, sites that switches, saw up to an 88% drop in traffic from Google after switching. That's from a study released last week.
Again, like Stripe, I'm going to ask: what the hell is an autoresponder? Keep seeing folks around here say to get one. Again, been running my (multiple) online businesses since 1997 and, never had one, don't know what it is. Off to ask Google...
[i]A program that automatically generates a set response to all messages sent to a particular email address. Autoresponders are messages set to go out automatically. They help you automate campaigns and manage one-to-one communication with your recipients.[/i]
Ah, yes... we covered that already... back there when I said how, anybody who's too lazy to put a letter on real paper in my real mailbox, it's my worth my time of day. If you can't be bothered to waste your precious time on me personally one on one, well, hell then I certainly ain't gonna precious hard earned money on you. That's my feeling on automated emails. Stupidest thing ever invented. I know, most people disagree... but my point is, you don't NEED them. They are OPTIONAL. Not everyone uses them, I certainly don't, so don't fall for the line saying: "You MUST do THIs and you MUST do THAT".... No... do what is right for you and your business. Just because some guru said ___ works, doesn't mean it'll work for every one.
But hey, you want to waste $40 a month, pissing people like me off, be my guest, I'll block you along with all the rest of the people who can't be bothered to treat me like a real person. I don't like bots.
But again... you sound like you don't even know WHY you are doing it, so why in the heck are you doing it? Because some faceless online guru told you to? So guru who makes a living SELLING REPORTS and never did a single thing written in the reports he sells?
I mean... going back to what I said to begin with here: the people who sell those reports, half the time, they didn't even write the dang thing.
You know how I know that? Because I have an uncle, who makes a living selling reports. He has 3 different ones. All how to get rich quick online. Every one of them is a PLR, that he bought, slapped his name on the cover of, and is reselling. he picture of the mansion in the book? Not his. The big fancy cars in the book? Not his. I asked him once, and he admitted that he never even read the three reports he sells and doesn't know what the advice in them even says to do. But, he's an online internet marketing "guru" just the same, because he sells reports and people buy them, even though he not only didn't write them, but also didn't read them.
The internet is FULL of these fake "guru" selling reports on how to make money online. Well, if you want to ACTUALLY do what those gurus do: find so PLR reports on how to make money online and just sell those, because that's all they are doing.
You are buying reports on how to make money online, reports telling you do this and do that, but reports that are sold to you by people who never even did the things they are telling you to do!
Uhm... third time... what the hell is a gravity form and why do you need it?
Back to Google...
[i]Gravity Forms for WordPress is a full featured contact form plugin that features a drag and drop interface, advanced notification routing, lead capture, conditional...[/i]
Ah... now see that's why I didn't know what it was. It's a WordPress specific thing. Yeah, not a big fan of WordPress. Used to have it. Since 2003, till 2013. Switched to SBI. Better uptime/no downtime, more freedom (no locked into templates and drag and drop; have the ability to full code out the site)
Uhm...if you're complaining about money though, you don't want SBI. It's not cheap. It's far from cheap. It's actually one of the most expensive web hosting services out there. I'm at $5,000 and counting right now (cost to host by site with SBI, since September 2013), but I've been doing this since 1997, I have well over enough customers to warrant having a site hosted by the Rolls Royce of web hosting services.
I started out with freewebs in 1997 (now out of business), later moved to webs, then switched to wordpress in 2003, then changed to SBI in 2013. So I am somewhat familiar with WordPress, but, I outgrow it. WP hasn't got enough bandwidth to hist a 6,000 page, 55,000 image, 600 video website. Their server kept crashing. The last crash deleted 1,000+ pages off my site, which thankfully I had backups of, but between server crashes and constant downtime I set out to find a better web host and ended up with a dedicated server with SBI, which is a local to me company, I can actually go visit with Ken Evoy in person if I ever felt I needed to. The server being housed locally was a fairly big plus with me for some reason, not sure why. And hey, I trust Canadians more then Americans. I grew up in a Quebec/French community, I just feel safer dealing with French Canadians. Soon as I found out SBI was a local business just around the corner from me, that was the "OMG! Sign me up!" moment. I know, probably not a good reason to pick a company to work with, but hey, it was the best move I ever made with my business, even if it was the most expensive one.
Back on topic. A Gravity form is a contact form? Can't you just find a free html code to dope into your site and create a contact form for free?
You know there are literally thousands of quiz sites out there, all free, right? QuoteV is a popular one. Survey Monkey is used by a lot of businesses. Just do a Google search for "make free quizzes" and there are thousands and thousands of free sites that let you make quizzes.
You just create a quiz, then embed it onto any page of your site. Doesn't cost a penny.
Embed code is this:
Just change the url to the url of your quiz, drop the code into any html box on your site, Save, Done.
Instant quiz on your site.
I have word for you: YouTube.
Listen carefully: YouTube.
Repeat after me: YouTube.
Repeat it a few times.
World's LARGEST video hosting service. World's 2nd largest search engine. Owned by the world's largest search engine. And it's free. Totally free.
YouTube is free.
Not only is YouTube free, but YouTube PAYS you to upload videos. And they give you the free embed codes to embed your videos into your website. Just copy and paste.
You Tube is not only free, but it is a whole extra income stream.
Why are you paying money for video hosting when you could have a video host that pays you?
Wait... how does any of this cost money?
It didn't cost me a penny to write any of mine.
Also, don't forget about FRED. If you start buying content from others instead of writing your own, Freddy's gonna get ya!
You know... a lot of the people who sell reports telling you to buy traffic are the same companies that sell you the traffic. Did you ever notice that?
Also, did you know Google will unindex your site if they catch you buying traffic. I already answered another guy's question on that.
I've been doing internet marketing since 1997. August 2017 will be my 20th anniversary doing this.
Do you want to know how much money I have paid, in the last 20 years, on traffic, ads, leads, views, followers, etc.
Not one penny.
It's all 100% organic traffic.
If you have a product that people want, one that stands out from the competition, one that is unique, one that no one else has... the people who want it WILL find you.
The website I have now (the one linked in my sig, under the link that says "My HomePage" that big eye blinding garish neon pink and purple site that has my pink motorhome and my marble encrusted volvo as it's header image - while I have 200 sites total from various places across the internet, that site in that particular link, is the one that brings in 90% of my entire online income; THAT is my SBI site, my Unicorn Porn site, which I mentioned earlier in this post, that site, cost $5,000 to build & host, and payments to host it are monthly, and I've had it since 2013, so, by the time 2020 comes around, I will have spent $10,000 just to host that ONE single, solitary website.... which brings in money by doing exactly what you just described: blogging (I write daily articles, posting a new one each day), e-courses (I post how to articles, exercises, and videos for girls looking to get into writing Yaoi and self publishing on Kindle... and it's 100% free, I don't charge then, and their's no membership to sign up for.) and recommending books by affiliate links - it's the first thing you'll notice on the site - those garish eye blinding neon pink book covers - click a book cover and it takes you right to Amazon. I get 70% royalty on the book sales, .001 a page on library rentals, and 4% affiliate fees on copies sold directly through my site.
Do I make enough from blogging, e-courses, and affiliate recommendations of books, to warrant a site that by 2020 I will have paid $10,000 to host? Yes. I do.
Do I recommend you start out with an overpowered server, a top level priced web host? No. I didn't. I started out with a free hosted web site, and I upgrades a little bit at a time as I needed to. I did not start out with a fancy WordPress template. I had a very simple free hosted web site when I first started. I upgraded on WHEN I was able to afford it. I upgraded again, when I was able to do so again. Now that I can afford SBI, I'm with SBI.
Kindle is free. It didn't cost me anything to publish my books. Get paid 70% royalty.
YouTube is free. It didn't cost me anything to upload my videos. Get paid 45% royalty.
AdSence is free. Get paid 81% royalty.
Affiliate programs are free. Get paid 2% to 75% royalty depending on company and I'm signed up with more then 200 companies. You can tell who they are by looking at the ads around my site.
I used a free hosted website for well over 10 years, before I switched to a paid service.
Zazzle is free. It didn't cost me anything to upload my art. I get paid 48% royalty on sales, + an additional 15% royalty if the sale came off a link on my website instead of directly from their site.
I write my own copy, my own content, my own articles, my own blog posts... even the legal/disclaimer pages... I found a local lawyer who does free advice, went to him to have him look at it, them put it up. I never paid any one to do the codes, writing, art or anything else. I did it all myself.
When I first started out, I didn't have any money to put into getting started. I was forced to find free ways to do everything. I was forced to find out how to write code myself,, because I couldn't afford to hire any one to do it. And in the end, I'm better for it. When something goes wrong on my site, I know how to fix it myself now.
It wasn't easy.
It wasn't quick.
It took a lot of hard work.
I went out and started taking classes at local community centers and community colleges, so that I could learn to do even more things myself. Every time I ran into something I didn't know how to do, I actively sought out classes that I could take locally so I could learn how to do it. I didn't sit back on my ass waiting for others to serve me on a silver platter.
It took a lot of hard work, determination, and perseverance to get where I am.
I've run into roadblocks, been side lined by major health issue including my elderly dad going into a coma for months and then not being able to live on his own and having to spend since 2006 taking care of him on top of everything else. Then in 2013, I suffered a back, hip, and knee injury that had me paralyzed for 5 months and nearly 2 years relearning to walk because the nerve and muscle damage was so bad. A bomb blew up my house. I've got 3 ruptured discs in my spine and hobble around on a cane, because I absolutely refuse to stay in a wheelchair... and guess what... I never once let any of that stop me from this career.
Honey... your complaining because your wife is about to have a baby and need to make house payments...try being crippled and living for 9 years under a tarp, while keeping your online career going at the same time. Google me. I'm a survivor. I didn't survive, by sitting back and whimpering, and whining that others should be doing the work for me. After the bomb, doctors didn't think I'd ever get out of bed again. 3 months ago, I went mountain climbing. Why? Because I refuse to give up, give in, or take no for an answer.
I succeeded in my online career, just like I succeeded in relearned to walk: when like tossed lemons at me, I didn't around making lemonade, I grabbed life by the balls, ripped them off and made testicle stew.
You want to succeed in internet marketing and making money online?
You won't, not with this attitude:
With an attitude like that, life is gonna plow right over you and toss you in the gutter and you won't survive, you won't get back up. With an attitude like that, if you ever get in a wheelchair, you'll never get back out. There years ago doctors said I would never walk again. I'm not only walking again, I just climbed Cadillac Mountain.
I have succeeded online because I take my online career just as seriously as I did relearning to walk.
If you want to succeed in ANYTHING in life, no matter what it is... it all boils down to your attitude.
If you believe you can do it, you're right.
If you believe you can't do it, you're right.
Whatever you believe about your succeed...that's the end result you'll get.
If you constantly are saying it costs too much money and the work is too hard and why can't some one else do it for you.... you'll never see past the money spent, you'll never put effort into the work, and you'll always be looking for a scape goat to do the work for you.
Attitude is everything in this field.
Your attitude, your determination... it's whats going to determine if you succeed or fail in whatever you do in life, including internet marketing.
Change your attitude, change your life. It really is as easy as that.
Now, don't think I'm mad at you, cause, I'm not. I'm mad at the people who sell reports telling new people to do this or do that and convince them to put all sorts of money into stuff that they don't need to buy. It's wrong of them to be doing that. It's no wonder you get frustrated and depressed and feel like giving up. Who wouldn't when they are hyping information that is pushing you to your limits?
My whole point of this very long rant, is quite simply the fact that you can and should start out with as many free services as possible, until you get a feel for what you want to do and where you want to take your career. Once you have a firmer grasp on the business, then you can start branching out and upgrading. But, when you start out, it's best to just go with the free stuff and get a feel for what internet marketing is like, before you decide to put a lot of money into it. Once you've learned the basics and decide it is the right path for you, then you can start testing out paid options one at a time, 30 day trails and stuff, to see which one is best for you. Don't spend over your limits either. If a service os too expensive, then you don't nee it. Go with what you can afford and don't over spend. As your income increases, then you can upgrade to more things.
And yes, I did just spend 4 hours writing this. Oh well. It's way past my bedtime and I haven't eaten yet. Guess I'll stop here and go cook, before I find another rant to add to this.
Anyways. Best of luck to you and congratulations on the new baby!
And your name is coolbutters...nothing to do with exoticbutters is it? (Sister Location reference...not many people know it and would have no clue what I was referencing. FNaF fanfiction reference. I think in terms of fanfiction, so when I saw coolbutters my brain went: "Hey! A FNaF fan!.)